jukief : I particularly remember the nonsense back around 1971
where the Society portrayed the physical heart as the seat of emotions,
the brain as the seat of intellect, and that these two actually carried
on conversations that determined a person's conduct.
I remember that Convention. I had just been baptised a few months before and found it rather strange but I remember in the subsequent articles they referred to the effect of heart transplants on the recipients and I thought maybe there was something in it.
I will have a look out for the book you mention, "A People For His Name: A History of Jehovah's Witnesses and An Evaluation", and see if I can't find it in a library. Another more recent book is "Jehovah's Witnesses: Continuity and Change" (George Chryssides, 2016) which is pretty accurate and seems to be written without an agenda. He is an academic on new religious movements and I find it a bit dry but it is a change from most studies which are heavily biased for or against.
You are right about my belief being more or less deistic, but not in the classic sense. If it does not sound too high-minded I would say I just want to believe what is true. Even though we may be able to explain how some material thing (the universe) came out of nothing, I find it more convincing that there was an intelligent first cause that brought it about. As I say beyond that everything about god is a matter of faith. However, in the interests of truth I am willing to entertain both that God does not exist, and that the first cause is the God of the Bible. I will even entertain that Jehovah's Witnesses are his chosen people in our time although there are some aspects I cannot at present reconcile.
I really enjoy your writing style. You present your arguments without the need to insult or ridicule or change the subject. You remind me very much of alanf except you're a bit gentler. Iron fist in a velvet glove and all that. In my earlier discussions I was asserting that an argument from non-contradiction is subjective rather than objective. I am speaking about the principle (no logical proof may assume its conclusion as part of its premise) rather than a particular case, but you did give an example of your friend who was burnt to a crisp but was fresh-faced a few days later. This would certainly be a quandary especially if you had known this friend all your life, and knew her to be honest to a fault. Perhaps there was an explanation. Perhaps the person you saw was, in fact, her twin who had come to town to look after her sister who had been so badly burned. What you would no doubt do is go up to "your friend" and say you thought she had been in a fire. The twin would then explain that you were confusing her with her sister and, yes, your friend is bed-ridden from her injuries. The problem we have is we cannot ask God to explain himself, either because he does not exist or because he does not communicate directly with us today. So we try and reconcile the problem. The arguments remain subjective. The argument that SBF has presented is possibly satisfying to him. Of course he cannot prove it. Neither can it be disproved. In the same way the argument that the Christian God does not exist is possibly satisfying to some due to the problem of evil, natural or otherwise. But it can neither be proved nor disproved, at least not until we get to have that chat with God.